Christmas Crazy



Yes I have a book by that title, and no this blog is not about that book, although the two do share a similar theme. This blog is about the fact that, although Christmas is a magical time of year, no matter how hard I try, it seems that a year doesn’t go by where a little crazy doesn’t get mixed in with the magic. The problem isn’t Christmas, I’m afraid the problem is me. I have a tendency to overdo things, which usually seem like a good idea at the time, but then I end up totally overwhelmed when I run out of month and still have tasks to complete.

For example, pictured below is my village. The year I took the photos I had it set up on tables around the living area of the house, but some years I put it all in one location under the tree. Do you have any idea how long it takes to set this all up? Let’s just say I could build a real house in less time. Do I enjoy the village once it is set up? Sure. Does it end up adding a little crazy to my Christmas? Most definitely.

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Which brings me to the tree. Again, we tend to make a production out of getting a tree. In spite of the fact that we live in the forest we still drive two hours to where the ‘good’ trees are, hike around for hours to find the perfect one, cut it down, haul it home, and decorate the fifteen foot monstrosity. Do I have fond memories of these trips into the woods? Absolutely. Does it add to the crazy? How could it not?


Add to that the shopping, wrapping, baking, and holiday parties and events, and you have a mental meltdown in the making. Today is December 1st. I have decided that this year I will cut back and try to keep the crazy out of Christmas. Will I succeed? Your guess is as good as mine. I do tend to be just a teeny bit of an overachiever (okay I’m a big ol’ type A.) Still I know that I don’t really have to make 20 different kinds of cookies so that everyone I ever met can have their favorite, and I don’t really have to buy everyone in the family the perfect gift, and I don’t really have to attend every holiday party or event I am invited to.  But knowing and doing aren’t always the same thing.  I am however off to a good start. Thanks mostly to some tight deadlines, I have only set up a fraction of my village and the tree is from the forest next to my house and not the next state. So stay tuned and see how I do.

Giveaway: comment below and be entered to win a Kindle or Paperback copy of Santa Sleuth and Christmas Crazy (Non US Kindle only.) I will choose a winner on Saturday 12/5.

ChristmasCrazyEbook  Santa Sleuth Facebook



134 thoughts on “Christmas Crazy

  1. sallycootie says:

    I think a little crazy is inevitable. I thought I could tone it down by eliminating some of the traditions that didn’t make much sense anymore – like not baking a dozen varieties of cookies because I don’t have teenagers in the house anymore. But new traditions pop up to take their place and I feel I must must must do them so the crazy continues. I love the holidays, though, so crazy is good ;-).

  2. Janel F says:

    I am not really into the decorating side of Christmas. I don’t mind buying gifts though so that’s crazy enough for me.

  3. Deb Forbes says:

    I am the same way only mine is crazy trying to crochet presents for family. I am always up late Christmas Eve finishing something some year I will start early.

  4. Margo Sue says:

    With Chanukah, Christmas and 3 children’s birthdays, we used to go present crazy – until we arrived at this solution. The children get gifts on their birthdays. Grandparents give gifts for their holiday (not both). In house, thought, we divided the 8 nights of Chanukah like this: Mom and Dad give the first night, First child gives the second, Second child gives the third night, third child gives the fourth night, grandparents give the fifth night. For the remaining nights, each child picks a charity and gives. So, some nights of giving, some nights of getting.

  5. Judy Burgi says:

    I don’t do Christmas Crazy anymore. Perhaps it is because it finally wore me down. I don’t strive to be perfect as I have in the past, fretting over this, fretting over that. I could find perfect gifts for family and friends and still worry if they were really perfect or not. Drove me crazy!! So now, I do as little as possible. Battling with cancer I know life is short and perhaps a little relaxation isn’t bad at all.

    • Debbie Hiemstra says:

      I undertand that- physically I can’t do all of it anymore. However I still do some and will have to be satisfied with that.

  6. Why do we let ourselves get all out of sorts? I’m like you I wouldn’t do it any other way. It was harder to do with the kids all grown up and out of the house. Then I stopped and thought about it and believe that I do it for the memories. The kids come home for Christmas and I still want them to have a magical Christmas. So every year I wonder why but do it. Merry Christmas🎄

  7. Kathy Dunn says:

    I think going crazy at Christmas is okay. Granted, since my kids are gone, I don’t decorate and set things out as much as I used to. We have been having Christmas at my daughter’s house but this year we may have it at mine. I keep telling myself I will start back up if I ever get grandchildren! In the meantime, the tree will be going up this weekend!

  8. Brandy Barber says:

    I did some crazy when I was younger and first married but when we added kids I started cutting back because they would get into stuff. We did spend the first two years of my daughters life running up and down the road for Christmas eve making sure we hit all the Christmas parties every friend and family member in the state had. It became to much and cut out a lot. now I miss it bc I’m down to just dad and brother and sister. Everyone works different hours so we can’t get together for a party so it will be a drop in when ever. I know dad misses the party and family but he is so sick now that when he does have a lot of ppl around he ends up in bed for days after. This might be he last Christmas but nobody wants to talk about it so everyone is a little sad. My husband has lost ppl over the years so we only have his 92 year old grandma’s house to go to. yes she still lives by herself and takes care of herself even drives. It is alot of fun getting together with them. This thanksgiving it seems that all the babies have grownup and now everyone brings their fur baby. We ended up with 3 inside dogs and 1 outside dog enjoying our thanksgiving with us. my husbands dad passed 3 yrs ago and his family dropped all the kids from the family list so we don’t have that. I guess this year I haven’t got into the Christmas spirit. We lived away from family in a Apartment for 9 years and just moved back home, My husband has gotten into the Christmas spirit and has decided he and the kids are going to hang lights all over the house and yard. maybe, this will be a new family tradition we have only lived in this house a year so we will see.

  9. Loretta Sullivan says:

    I’ve reached the place in my life where I can pretty much avoid Christmas crazy. The children are grown, the grand children are mostly grown (only 2 of the 10 are still in school). The older cat eats or plays with the tree and decorations so decorating has been scaled way back and this year he has a new friend to teach all his tricks. I still enjoy all the traditions but I’ve learned to do less and let the younger generation do more!

  10. Brenda Rozek says:

    I’ve slowed down in my decorating over the last few years. My Dept. 56 Snow Village are all in storage, but looking at how beautiful yours are reminds me how special they are so I may just have to bring them out of storage this year.

  11. Elizabeth Dent says:

    I don’t do Christmas crazy . Since we both are retired and not able to do what we use to do . We do put up a Chtistmas tree and some decoration in the house . Wreath outside . Use to do lights outside , but can’t do that anymore .

  12. Christi King says:

    I’m not really a decorator so I don’t really go crazy with the decoration. The gift giving is what I love and where my crazy comes in. I love finding the perfect gift for everyone on my list.

  13. Michele Hayes says:

    Good luck in your effort to try to cut back the crazy this year. Sounds like your off to a good start. I’m not so crazy anymore but used to try to do everything myself. Now if things happen, they happen. Even my husband has started taking care of setting up and taking down the tree. 🙂

  14. The older I get the less I do. I have a large collection of Santa’s that I used to put out (ceramic, paper mache, etc) – if they come out the paper weight collection has to be put away. I haven’t seen those Santa’s in a couple years – just too much work. You’ll slow down eventually. Until then – enjoy the crazy. I have good memories of those days.

  15. Your Christmas village is amazing. I don’t think I have the patience to do all that…and even if I did, my cats would just Godzilla the whole thing (you don’t want to see my tree right now). Can’t wait to read the books!

  16. I have to hold myself back because honestly, I don’t like the clean up after. I am the only one who packs everything up. My husband is not the festive decorator because he was forced to when he was little. I was swooned by the crackling records of Nat King Cole, Bing Crosby and Patsy Cline to name a few while I decorated the tree when I was little. I loved it! Taking it down, all over the house, was the part I disliked. So, as an adult, I keep it calm with a modest tree and some mantle decor. It’s enough for us.

    Merry Christmas all!!!!

  17. Linda Kleback says:

    We don’t go too crazy, but we love what we do. I especially love decorating our tree with the ornaments we’ve had forever.

  18. Debbie Hiemstra says:

    I liked the crazy when I was younger and had someone to share in it. But since my husband’s death this summer, I find that I can’t do it all physically or emotionally. But he loved Christmas and I always will so I do some.

  19. I love the magic that the Christmas decorations bring…especially the lights. I am wacky over them. And, I concur about how long it takes to put up the village(s). But, they are also magic. When my son was young, I used to make up stories about the folks who lived in the houses. He loves those houses to this day. By next year, his son will be born and experiencing his first Christmas so we’ll see if the stories continue.

  20. Amy Bryant says:

    I try hard not to go too overboard with Christmas, but it is so much fun. This year, I have had a new challenge. We are closing on our new house December 18th, so I have been torn between decorating some for our girls (6 and 2), or not…

  21. Karen Candee says:

    Fortunately I have a helper to put up our outside decorations. He even came in and put up our Christmas tree! I’m not able to do everything myself anymore but I still love it all.

  22. Doward Wilson says:

    Christmas was very involved when I was younger and there were still little ones in the family. I miss it, but am glad to be more relaxed for what we still do.

  23. The older I get, the less Christmas Crazy happens. So far I have not even bought one gift and I am getting a little anxious about that. But it will all get done, it always does. Love your blog, i was laughing while reading it. And the Christmas village looks amazing.

  24. Ruth Nixon says:

    Looking at the stories before mine, I see a little bit of my story in each one.Christmas has always been very big in my life.I was born to older parents that were married 10 years so from my first Christmas it was big even tho my navy daddy was never able to share. My mom was a orphan with one sister and she gave me all the Christmas she didn’t have. This year 4 generations of Christmas ornaments is moving to the house next door, younger family bought the house and moved from mine.I truly found out over the years that family and friends are the real Christmas. I must admit to being a little sad but my sweet DIL will see our traditions go on and my Grandsons have to two houses to play in. Happy Holidays to all how ever you celebrate it…

  25. Nancy Roessner says:

    I enjoyed reading about other’s experiences here. It seems that there is no right way and no wrong way, which is great. I’m not the only one who used to do it all, yet can no longer do any of it. I still enjoy other people’s efforts, though. Your village and your tree are wonderful!

  26. dblaser60 says:

    You and I could be twins Kathi! I’m a perfectionist and I’m my own worst enemy but I am learning to take short cuts and leaving some decorations and cookie off the list.
    Have a Merry Christmas and thanks for the giveaway!


  27. Joyce C Moser says:

    When I was younger, oh boy, Christmas crazy I was! I loved the shopping and the decorating, and we would put up a Christmas village with a train as well. Kathi, yours looks amazing and you have so much more stuff than we have, so I can well imagine the time it takes you to set it up. Cookie baking, oh my. I did so much baking. And my husband’s family, with is huge, would come to our house for the gift exchange and big dinner. The dinner was turkey and ham, mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, green beans, corn on the cob, tossed salad, macaroni salad, macaroni & cheese, and so forth. And, I made five different desserts. I fixed everything, and I am now wondering how did I do it all? I loved it! I married into a fabulous family and we are still very close and we get together still, but now it’s at other brother’s homes and everyone pitches in preparing the food. I can no longer able to prepare even a single food item but I do have wonderful memories of Christmases past.

  28. peggy clayton says:

    My husband put up lights on the outside tree and surprised my mom and i as she was driving me home Wed night so i guess since we have the Holiday countdown calenders sent out to the kids and he has done that I should do what I can inside. So today i put on the holiday music and later i will do what i can inside so there is a little done inside when he comes home tonight. We don’t do that much as we are empty nesters with 2 chiwauwaus (gosh always misspell that) and we live on a hill in a rural area where there are farms on hills across from us. Ugh a Calif woman living across from farms in Iowa who would of thought it anyway they don’t decorate so anything we do is alot! We will start cooking up some goodies maybe next weekend but since i am disabled during the year when someone takes me out i try to pickup presents that way we aren’t rushed during the end as the scooter basket only holds so much and it’s so funny as we have a bicycle backet on my scooter so it can be crazy looking when we buy lights etc.. It’s fun although so stressing for me less than others but once you start the cards then you know the holidays have started!

  29. I hope you have a wonderful, less crazy holiday season. Since my mom passed away two years ago, my holidays have gone downhill. half the time we do not get to see the rest of the family until after the holidays. I would love to have a crazy holiday again. Thank you for the chance to win your books.

  30. JoAn V. says:

    Our Christmas holidays are pretty quiet. We have only a few family members near and only close friends nearby. We get together as we all can and try to remember that, for us, family is what is important.

  31. Kathleen Costa says:

    Christmas makes me crazy, too! The house needs to be dressed with all the traditional decorations, plus any current trends. The best treats need to be on hand for any visitors dropping in. The perfect, personalized, and most creative gift needs to be purchased for all family and friends. Add to the crazy… When I was teaching, the room had to be decorated, a themed-party planned, and stocking made and stuffed for my class, colleagues, and former students. No wonder I went into an emotional tailspin on December 26!!!

  32. alice says:

    I end up with two crazies almost every year. The first is trying to fit enough baking in on my days off, and always getting carried away with the number of items that I plan to make. The 2nd is waiting until the last minute to start wrapping. I spend so much time worrying about getting everything and don’t leave enough time for wrapping. I still have time this year to do a little better on both of those. Please wish me luck!!

  33. sb8857 says:

    Christmas is wonderful, it’s what we do to ourselves that makes it crazy! You’re in good company, as I’m guilty of overdoing it and suffering the consequences as well! I have learned over the years though, that I don’t have to do all that I’ve done in the past and I’m enjoying Christmas much more as a result. My advice though, do what you want while you can, in moderation of course. or you’ll burnout faster than a Christmas candle. I’m disabled now and do a lot less, because of it, but I wouldn’t take anything for the pictures and memories of those “all out” years!! Merry Christmas!!

  34. I know what you mean. It is a hectic time of year, it goes by so fast. We do all sorts of things to get ready then it’s over in a flash. I put up more this year than I did last year. Hoping to get more in the spirit . With the kids gone it seems different but I decided I’m doing it for me. And so they will keep the memories of their childhood Christmas.

  35. Celia Fowler says:

    We are in a furnished rental house, with most of our things in storage, so Christmas decorations are a bit sparse. We do have a tree, ornaments and a pretty wreath and stockings, but I miss my Christmas Village and Fontanini Nativity set (we buy a new piece each Christmas, and it has gotten pretty elaborate). We may go crazy with outdoor lights this year!

  36. Peggy Hyndman says:

    I don’t decorate my house much now that I’m alone but I do help one of my daughters with her decorations. Throughout the year I knit or crochet gifts for Christmas and often have a booth at the local craft fairs. I don’t know how you find the time to do all you do. Your decorations are beautiful … thank you for sharing this part of your life with us, Kathi.

  37. Mary Jane Hopper says:

    Crazy is right! If I just had all the energy you have. Love your books and look forward to reading the new ones.

  38. Gina says:

    We tend to keep things simple… a Christmas tree with beautifully wrapped packages, a wreath and some pretty outdoor lights. Cookies and cocoa are always part of the season. There will be quiet times and crazy times, but it’s just all part of this wonderful season of joy and giving.

  39. Barbara Hawk says:

    My Christmas season is pretty calm. I have few gifts to buy and minimum decorations. I wish everyone a beautiful holiday season!

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